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5 must-hear Minnesota hip-hop tracks: 4/5/17

This week: Dimitry Killstorm, KnoX, Tomorrow Genius, and more.

There’s a near-constant stream of quality music coming from the Minnesota rap scene, and we’ve taken it upon ourselves to pick a few highlights from the past week in new releases and videos.

Here are 5 that are definitely worth your time.

This week, we have Kwey, Dimitry Killstorm, KnoX, King Oso, and Tomorrow Genius.

Kwey feat. Vlush - "Focus"

This slow, smooth groove from the multi-talented producer Kwey features vocals from Carter, lead singer from the electro-pop duo Vlush. "Focus" is an excellent example of his deft use of lush layering and his balance of organic and digitized sounds. The washing synth pulls back and forth over the steady stomp of the beat, as Vlush's lyrical persuasions follow suit in the seductive, nocturnal vibe.

Dimitry Killstorm - "Post Internet"

A self-directed collage video features a barrage of images accompanying the cascading flow of this instrumental off the recent solo beat album, I'm Dimitry Killstorm (IDK). The picturesque sequencing well represents the undertones of the sonics, displaying the pleasantry and the tension that simultaneously play off the heavy bass.

KnoX - "AYYYE (Snippet)"

Politically driven with a slight Pimp C drawl, KnoX exposes the realities of the oppressed while calling out the oppressors on this short portion of "AYYYE." There's a lot to digest in just over a minute, and KnoX has a knack for delivering powerful diatribes with enough vigor and slickness to make this singular verse especially compelling.

King Oso X BagBoy - "We Up Now"

Over a piano-driven beat, King Oso and BagBoy reminisce on the struggles that beset their rise. Plagued by disloyal friends, untimely loss of lives, and the pursuit of a better life, the pair go in about how focus and inner strength pushed them to their current level. Sharing a vocal chemistry and a hard-edged drive, the duo take the same energy they're known to bring to bangers and apply it to this effective and reflective track.

Tomorrow Genius - "612 LEGEND"

Starting the song off talking about flying out to L.A., Tomorrow Genius ultimately flexes his hometown notoriety with an ascending energy. Literally spelling out why his name carries weight in his home state, Tomorrow Genius displays his devotion to the scene that raised him ("We got talent in this city and the proof is me," he raps) while maintaining he's not limited by anything.

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